Status Report

NASA Space Shuttle Processing Status Report 11 August 2006

By SpaceRef Editor
August 11, 2006
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NASA Space Shuttle Processing Status Report 11 August 2006

Note: NASA’s Kennedy Space Center issues Space Shuttle Processing Status Reports periodically and is the source for information regarding processing activities associated with the vehicles and payloads. This report does not necessarily reflect the chronological order of future space shuttle missions. If you are a member of the media and would like further information, visit:

Mission: STS-115 – 19th International Space Station Flight (12A) – P3/P4 Truss Segment and Solar Arrays
Vehicle: Atlantis (OV-104)
Location: Launch Pad 39B
Launch Date: No earlier than Aug. 27, 2006 at about 4:30 p.m. EDT
Crew: Jett, Ferguson, Tanner, Burbank, MacLean and Stefanyshyn-Piper
Inclination/Orbit Altitude: 51.6 degrees/122 nautical miles

At Launch Pad 39B, functional tests and checkout of the shuttle and pad systems are under way. Installation of the elbow camera of the orbiter’s remote manipulator system (robotic arm) is complete. This weekend, hypergolic propellant loading will begin for the orbiter’s reaction control system, orbital maneuvering system pods and the auxiliary power units, and for the hydraulic power units of the solid rocket boosters.

The STS-115 payload was installed in Atlantis’ payload bay last Saturday. The payload for STS-115 is the Port 3/4 truss segment, the next major addition to the 11-segment integrated truss structure that will eventually span more that 300 feet. The P3/P4 truss, with its two large solar arrays, will provide one-fourth of the total power generation capability of the completed station.

The STS-115 crew visited KSC this week for a launch dress rehearsal, called the terminal countdown demonstration test. The demonstration test provided the crew an opportunity to participate in various simulated countdown activities, and included equipment familiarization and emergency egress training.

Mission managers will meet next week for a 2-day Flight Readiness Review, during which they will thoroughly assess the status of Space Shuttle Atlantis for launch. This meeting will yield a number of key decisions about STS-115, including selection of an official launch date.

Mission: STS-116 – 20th International Space Station Flight (12A.1) – P5 Truss Segment
Vehicle: Discovery (OV-103)
Location: Orbiter Processing Facility Bay 3
Launch Date: No earlier than Dec. 14, 2006
Launch Pad: 39B
Crew: Polansky, Oefelein, Curbeam, Higginbotham, Patrick, Fuglesang and Williams
Inclination/Orbit Altitude: 51.6 degrees/122 nautical miles

Processing of Discovery for its next mission, STS-116, continues in Orbiter Processing Facility bay 3. The thermal barrier on the orbiter’s rudder speed brake was replaced this week. Testing of the power reactant storage and distribution system is under way, as are checkouts of the Ku-band antenna heater, the main propulsion system and the orbital maneuvering system pods. Functional checkout of the radiator is complete. The wheels and tires for the nose landing gear have been installed. Windows no. 3 and 4 were removed and replaced.

Endeavour (OV-105)

Powered-up system testing continues on Endeavour in Orbiter Processing Facility bay 2 following an extensive modification period. Freon coolant loop no. 2 deservicing was completed this week. Rigging and alignment of the remote manipulator system (orbiter arm) pedestals continue. Workers completed verification of the orbiter’s airlock/hatch. Fuel tank installation for the power reactant storage and distribution (PRSD) system is under way. Oxygen tank no. 5 was installed last week, and leak checks were successfully completed this week. The PRSD supplies liquid hydrogen and liquid oxygen to the orbiter’s fuel cells, which serve as the electrical power plant for the vehicle.

SpaceRef staff editor.